Here we go again - Please Read!
It saddens me to report that Radionomy, our streaming service, is now the defendant in a lawsuit filed by a consortium of North American record labels claiming it has been operating as a source for "pirate" radio stations and failing to pay appropriate and required music royalties. See the article here for additional information. https://torrentfreak.com/record-labels-sue-winamp-...
Right after hearing this news, it was discovered that the music streams had fallen silent, and the Radionomy website had gone 404.
First let me say that Girls Rock Radio and Country Girl Radio are not now, nor have they ever been "pirate" radio. We absolutely believe artists are due performance and author royalties for their works. More than what is paid by terrestrial radio, by the way. Further, my two stations are a business, not a hobby. I firmly believe that Girls Rock Radio and Country Girl Radio have the enormous potential and responsibility to be a voice above and beyond just the entertainment value they provide.
Nevertheless, we have been operating under the Radionomy umbrella ever since the music industry dropped a bomb on independent online broadcasters by failing to recognize our inability to thrive under the crushing weight of the new royalty rates placed into effect on January 1, 2016. For an analysis on that, please read this open letter to David Byrne (Talking Heads) by Bill Goldsmith of Radio Paradise. http://rainnews.com/an-open-letter-to-david-byrne/
Prior to January 1, 2016 we paid royalties through StreamLicensing, LLC.
It is important for you to note that we were all told by Radionomy that royalties were being paid, and as producers of content for the Radionomy platform, that we should not worry about that, but instead continue to develop great Internet radio. We believed them. Whether or not Radionomy has been caught in a bold-faced lie is a matter for the courts to decide.
What does this mean for Girls Rock Radio and Country Girl Radio? If you read the open letter from Bill Goldsmith to David Byrne, you must surely realize there is no way we can continue legally and pay such astronomically high royalties. As such, it saddens me to announce that Girls Rock Radio and Country Girl Radio have no option at this time but to discontinue operations. If there is any possibility in the future for us to return at a cost structure that we can accept, I will absolutely consider it. After all, this hurts me as much as it hurts you - listeners and artists alike.
It would appear that 10's of thousands of Internet radio stations were silenced today by this action. The American music industry is tightening the reigns and soon, if not already, it's going to come down to the few giants in the streaming music space that don't really have any vested interest in the music, but can subsidize the astronomical cost to stream music on the Internet - Google, Amazon, and iTunes. From what I gather, all the rest are bleeding cash and it may just be a matter of time before they all fall. I seriously have no clue what the answer is here. All I know is that these are dark days for music.